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Avoid the hazards of black ice this winter

You face the possibility of a car accident every time you’re on the road, but there are some times of the year that are more dangerous than others. The attorneys at Escandon, Fernicola, Anderson & Covelli, LLP, understand the risks confronting New Jersey residents in adverse weather conditions, and are prepared to represent them if an injury occurs that was the fault of another driver.

The Federal Highway Administration claims that more than 1,300,000 crashes are caused throughout the country every year by weather conditions. These include snow, rain, fog and sun glare. However, one of the worst dangers you’ll encounter on the road this winter is black ice.

Black ice, states AccuWeather.com, is particularly hazardous because it is so difficult to see. It takes the form of an extremely slippery, smooth sheet of ice on the road, but can appear as mere wet pavement or be completely invisible. Even worse, vehicles have practically no traction on black ice, whereas they have a bit of traction on snow. How do you detect black ice before you drive over it? It may appear as patches of dark, shiny or wet pavement. Black ice is most prevalent at night and in the early morning. You will most often encounter it in the shade or on bridges and overpasses where water freezes more easily.

If you find yourself sliding on ice, it is important to stay calm and not to panic. You should never slam on the brakes or steer hard. Instead, allow your vehicle to pass over the ice patch and take your foot off the accelerator while keeping the wheel steady. It is also important to drive slower during freezing rain or snow, or when you’re driving in conditions where you may encounter black ice.

You may be the most careful driver on the road, but that won’t guarantee you avoid all accidents. To learn more about what to do after an accident caused by a negligent driver, visit our page on car accidents.

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